Mr. Pagan Amum, our “differences are not intended to separate or alienate. We are different precisely in order to realize our need for one another.” Destmond Tutu
By: Duop Nyidar,
Former MP National Assembly, Juba
April 2, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — On May 25th 2014 Pagan Amum the exiled and embattled SPLM SG, in a letter addressed to the citizens of South Sudan, rebutted what he called “unsubstantiated reports that they were undecided”. He reiterated that his group is “against the heinous war in South Sudan and is for “peaceful resolution to the conflict”. Up to this point I have no quarrel with Mr. Amum. But Mr. Amum went further and added, “to them (Dr. Riek &Kiir factions), the idea of the third party to the peace talks is anathema.
In other words, they are telling us that they can’t negotiate with those who have not killed enough citizens, who have not destroyed properties and desolated cities, who have not maimed and displaced untold numbers of people”. Apparently they think we do n’t have enough blood on our hands to be in Addis Ababa”. Pagan’s statement only exposes his group’s hidden agenda than exonerates them from what he terms as “senseless war”.
First, Pagan and Company cannot distance themselves from what is going on in South Sudan. In fact they are heavily immersed and are involved in the triggers. As I understood the G10 or SPLM- Uhuru , as they are often referred by Juba, and Dr. Riek wanted to resolve their misunderstanding peacefully with President Kiir. However, the events that followed completely turned the tables upside down, as revealed by Pagan himself “however, no sooner did we leave the president’s house or office then we would never hear from him again.
It appeared some of the people of his inner circle were happy to egg him on toward a confrontation, for reasons best known to them”. “President Kiir refused to listen to us and December 15th happened. Consequently Dr. Riek ran to the bush and joined the rebellion”. President Kiir by closing the door against their faces and starting to murder his people has rejected the peaceful approach and chose the military option. It is absurd for Mr. Amum to turn around now and brag that his group is for peaceful resolution of the conflict when Kiir whom you are quarreling with does not accept a peaceful option as proven by his actions.
The G10 position as exposed by these facts is either stupid or opportunistic. Yes, there are more than two options in this horrendous conflict: either you are with Kiir, the oppressor or with Dr. Riek the victim or an opportunist who will cease the opportunity to snatch anything dropped by both contenders when they are locked up in the fight. We all have observed a hyena when two lions fight over a prey that one of them has killed. The hyena sits quietly and ceases any opportunity to snatch a piece of meat or bone and runs away. Why should your group be a third party when at the beginning all of you with Dr. Riek were fully involved in awakening the sleeping lion? Remember this wise quote from Bishop Destmond Tut, “if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen to side with the oppressor.
A simple correction I want to make is that Dr.Riek did not run and joined any rebellion. There was no existing rebellion before December 2013 Nuer massacre. All of us we the SPLM members wanted to resolve the differences within our party amicably and peacefully. Kiir and his cohorts, for reasons best known to them decided to opt for military confrontation. Any blames on the SPLM/A-IO are unjustified or did Pagan and his group want us to give our other cheek after Kiir murdered Nuer ethnic group on December 15th?
Mr. Pagan, your simplistic logic that you are a third party because you refused to spill the blood of your fellow citizens is vividly misleading and fallacious. Who among your group have not got blood stained hands since 1983? Who among your group can claim piety and credibility since 2005? South Sudanese know you all because you have a credibility baggage that will be remembered for a long time not to mention the corruption sagas you were involved in and which deprived the people of South Sudan from development and decent livelihood. So the choices in this war are only two, either you are with us or you are with the devil (Kiir). You all realized Kiir’s creeping dictatorship and mismanagement of public affairs and funds. As leaders of our party you wanted to discuss with the chairman. He refused arrogantly and began killing people, in this scenario is a third option a realistic one that can free our people and our resources? Mr. Pagan, you might have stashed your letter to the people of South Sudan with a lot of logic but logic and truth are not synonymous.
Why do some people/analyst argue that there must be only two waring camps in South Sudan and that the population of the newest country in the world should be polarized along Kiir-Riek lines, without any other option. The argument goes like: If you are not with Riek then you are a Kiir supporter, and vice versa. Why is it difficult for them to understand the difference between being neutral (which they think should not exist) and being against both Riek and Kiir, which is the position of Pagan, the region, and the international community at large. As a former SPLA Officer and freedom fighter and proud nuer myself I am against both Riek and Salva. Does Rev.Tutu’s example touch me? We need peace in South Sudan, not war. Thus, I understand those like me who would want to distance themselves from any war, no matter how just they want to perceive it.
The G10 or former detainees are not neutral they are to be allocated 10% in the power sharing agreement. What if the two major armed groups said to hell with the G10, would they take up arms to demand the 10%?
G10 are advocating for an interim gov of national unity under UN’s supervision and without Kiir and Machar. They are the weakest link and the most pathetic opportunists. They made the mistake of playing along with the directors of the staged coup and ended up being betrayed, isolated by Juba and so now they are suffering the consequences of agreeing to having Machar isolated from amongst their mist or possibly assassinated. Their bad plans have back fired in favour of Machar.